Beyond portals and gifts: Towards a bottom-up net-economy

Felix Stalder


The Internet is haunted by its own promise: the liberation of information. Typically, this promise is a strange hybrid of 60's progressive libertarianism and 90's aggressive venture capitalism. The slogan "information wants to be free" still shapes the dynamics of on-line content consumption and production. The results: America Online and Netscape merge and the high-tech gift economy flourishes.

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